Professor Membrane is the father of Dib and Gaz, but he has very little time for his offspring, being one of the most famous and important people on Earth. The Professor, as he is often called, is rarely at home, so he supervises his kids in the form of a floating monitor, which often spews out pre-recorded reminders that are often way out-of-date. Expectedly, Dib and Gaz refer to him as "Dad".
Although his parenting skills seem to be missing in action, he really does love his kids, making time once a year for dinner together and always remembering to activate the food monitor. However, Membrane is somewhat ashamed of his son's belief in the paranormal, refusing to call it a "proper" science. However, he believes Dib's obsession is just a phase (or as he speaks of it, "temporary insanity"), that Dib will grow out of, and allows his son to do as he pleases to an extent. On occasion, Membrane is so preoccupied with work that he fails to recognize his own kids (i.e. not recognizing Dib when he comes backstage in "Battle-Dib").
In "The Most Horrible X-mas Ever," Membrane seems to have incredible power, similar to that of Dib's power in the episode Dib's Wonderful Life of Doom, when he blasts open the back door with a laser fired from his glove, although this is likely based more upon technology than any natural giftedness. Professor Membrane has also had a grudge against Santa Claus ever sine he was a child; on Christmas day, instead of giving him twelve cases of Uranium-238 as he'd asked, Santa gave him a present overflowing with socks.
Membrane is based on many real-life scientists and inventors, such as Nikola Tesla and Stephen Hawking. He has a science TV show similar to Bill Nye the Science Guy, which requires the people in the audience to pass several tests just to sit and watch. He is somewhat of a celebrity, and was described in Future Dib as someone "without whom the whole world falls into chaos."
Had the series continued, it would have been revealed that Dib and maybe Gaz as well were not actually Membrane's birth children, but had been genetically engineered by the Professor, perhaps as an experiment. This may explain why Dib and Gaz seem to have superhuman powers, as well as the lack of a mother in the Membrane household. However this idea was never brought to fruition.
The Professor appears to be about 40 or so; his first name is unknown, but none is apparently needed; he is world-renowned for his contributions to human science, making breakthroughs in every scientific field from genetics and neuroscience to disease research and engineering. Some of his most notable inventions include the hover helmet, the Perpetual Energy Generator (which was never put into use, due to heckling from the crowd), and Super Toast.
Professor Membrane's appearance has not developed much since he was a child, other than his increased height. Dib looks a lot like his father, both sharing black hair styled in similar scythe-like shapes.
Facts of Doom
- Professor Membrane (somewhat erroneously) believes that Zim is from another country rather than another planet (this could refer to the fact that "alien" is also a synonym for "immigrant").
- He also said in one episode that if there truly were aliens in space then they would be too far away and believes that not one of them could travel the massive distance to our planet, but little did he realize that Zim was an alien from space and that he survived the massive trip to Earth.
- During Bad, Bad Rubber Piggy, the episode opens with one of the Professor's shows and during the show he talks about the time stream and explains the really bad consequences that would happen if the time stream were ever messed with and says anyone who messes with it is a complete moron. Meanwhile, Zim, who's not paying attention to the show (and it's even on his big screen), is about to mess with the time stream to make Dib's life miserable. So, hence with what Membrane said before about being a moron.
- The Professor seems to have a deep and strong loathing for the fact that Dib actually successfully re-awakened the living dead and won't let Dib forget it, even though Dib said he was sorry.
- He doesn't allow Dib to use his tools for his "para-science", as stated in the halloween episode. This, however, is contradicted in "NanoZIM," when he allows Dib to use his nanoship.
- The Professor is very embarrassed by Dib's crazed antics, strange behavior and his strong belief in the paranormal and his dedication to it and sometimes the Professor even seems angered by it.
- Every time Dib causes a city wide black-out, the professor restores the power that's been lost by his own son.
- He has on a couple of times in the series called Dib " My poor insane son."
- In Battle Dib, it's revealed in his autobiography that the professor's first sentient thought was "I will poop now."
- The Professor calls Gaz his "funny child" and sometimes he even calls her "honey." He sometimes even calls her by her name - which he never does to Dib.
- He knows that Dib's voice angers Gaz greatly, but still has her go up into his room to spend time with him and hopes that her company will help Dib become "less insane."
- The Professor has a little handmade puppet version of himself and seems to have a talent for ventriloquism.
- He's the creator of super toast and of the perpetual energy generator (also known as P.E.G.).
- In "The Most Horrible X-mas Ever," during a flashback when the Professor was a kid, he sounds as if he's already an adult.
- In "Halloween Spectacular of Spooky Doom," he appears as a nightmare monster along with Gaz.
- Professor Membrane's voice actor is Roger Bumpass, who also provides the voice of Squidward on Spongebob Squarepants.
- Bumpass also did Nightmare Bitters in Halloween Spectacular of Spooky Doom.
- Professor Membrane makes a cameo in one of Snafu's webcomics: PowerPuff Girls Doujinshi. He can be seen with other the scientists: Professor Utonium and Dr. Nora Wakeman.
- Melissa Fahn played Professor Membrane during Invader Con 1, as Roger was not invited as a guest at the time.
- Professor Membrane's name is based off of Membrane, a thin, film-like structure that will separate two fluids.
- Dib and Professor Membrane's Relationship
- Gaz and Professor Membrane's Relationship
- Inventions of Professor Membrane
- Professor Membrane:Screenshots
|Characters of Invader Zim|
|Dib • Gaz • GIR • Zim|
|Almighty Tallest Purple • Almighty Tallest Red • Ms. Bitters • Professor Membrane|
|Invader Skoodge • Keef • Minimoose • Tak • President Man • Roboparents • Lard Nar • Skool Principal|
|Adult Dib • Old Kid • Hobo • Alan • Meef • Skoolchildren|
|Mortos der Soulstealer • Sergeant Slab Rankle • Sergeant Hobo 678 • Shadow Hog • Chickenfoot • Sizz-Lorr • Gashloog • Willy • Iggins • Walton Chunky • Pigboy|
|Louie • Digestor • Almighty Tallest Spork • Almighty Tallest Miyuki • Bloody GIR • Cthulu • Cybernetic Kitten • Dinky • Little Timmy|